Month of May Stitched in Memory- Guest Blog

These photos are from May 1987, taken in Kentucky.  Sent by my good friend Joanne. We were so much younger then, we’re older than that now……

And a tribute to Phyllis George who passed May 14th.

Joanne, Phyllis, Ruth

Ruth – you and I reconnected as Army wives in Fort Knox, KY in 1986 after we both moved there from Germany, where we first met.  You taught me the art of smocking and we spent a lot of time together stitching beautiful outfits for our little girls.  Then we decided to make it a “cottage industry” and created our business Handsmocked in Kentucky.  We took special orders and sold our work in the  Kentucky Arts Council In Louisville … where we attracted the attention of Phyllis George (then wife of the Governor of Kentucky!) .

We had such fun and dreams with our little business, and then all of a sudden we were invited to Phyllis George’s home as a vendor for her Kentucky Derby celebration which featured Kentucky based artists!  What an adventure ….
33 years later I still have a lot of memories and a wardrobe of smocked dresses to hand down to some special little girl.  
My memory of Phyllis George was a gracious, giving woman who cared deeply about Kentucky artisans.   (And she wrote us a check for a handsmocked dress for her daughter.)

Joanne was able to go into her boxes of photos which are all labeled and put her hands on these photos.

Joanne even put her hands on our little brochure.  Her sister did the artwork.

Our daughters Laura and Anna at a tea party, sporting our smocking. This photo is in Germany where both girls were born.

Spring Hats Evoke Another Era to Me

When I was visiting the family in Ohio for an extended stay, one of the last days I was there we went to Von Maur, a lovely department store in Columbus at the Polaris Mall.

Maura and I saw all the elegant Spring/Easter hats on display.  She tried on a gray one that matched her Ohio State Swim shirt.  A gracious salesperson asked if we needed any help and of course, we did not. But she didn’t seem worried about trying on a hat.

(*see Men’s Hat Posts below the photos)

Growing up, almost all women in church wore hats.

.The Kentucky Derby, the first Saturday in May, is a place to wear a fashionable hat. Or a Derby party as you watch the race on TV.  You see Royal Wedding attendees sporting stylish hats.  I wish I’d looked inside the hats to see where they are made. Do you own a hat and on what occasion do you wear it?

Putting on a hat can change your whole persona, help you feel dressed to the nine.  The epitome of dressing up in style.

“To the nine” is an English idiom meaning “to perfection” or “to the highest degree” or to dress “buoyantly and high class”. In modern English usage, the phrase most commonly appears as “dressed to the nine” or “dressed up to the nine”.

 

*  And not to leave the men out of the hat post.

I posted Meyer the Hatter in New Orleans in 2009 

and the Bleecker Street Hat Shop in NYC post in 2012